Just another Friday

‘Sup, party people?!

Not much is happening here in the World O’ Rae. I’ve had a pretty good morning. The only thing going on with me is a little leg pain, and it’s really not enough to complain about – just enough to be a good reason to smoke if it gets much worse.

This morning’s been rather productive. I’ve already done dishes, cleaned the kitchen, made the car payment and changed our address with the car company. (Woo! I made it past the computers to a real live person!)

I’m looking forward to the weekend.

Tomorrow, I get to see my friend Elin, who I haven’t seen in over 10 years! We’re going to the gem show here in town, and then to lunch. It’ll be awesome to see her.

And then this Sunday, assuming we’re both well enough, Adam and I are going to go hiking. I used to hike almost every Sunday with Hike the Geek before my MS introduced seizures to the mix. I’ll be glad to take back that part of my life. If I can hike consistently for a month, I’m going to ask Reichart if I can add Chicago to the Hike the Geek page and be the Chicago leader.

Little by little, I’m starting to have a life again.

It’s kinda great. 🙂

Reporting In for Duty!

Yikes! I missed a couple of days! Didn’t mean to do that. Life’s been a bit hectic. Lemme catch you up. First Tuesday.

Fun and Frolic with the Tube that Honks

Bright and early Tuesday morning, I had an appointment with the Box that Knocks, The Tube that Honks, everybody’s favorite claustrophobia inducing device: The MRI machine. It was an 8 am appointment, so Adam and I left the house at 6:45 a.m. to fight traffic and make our way over to the University of Chicago.

Surprisingly enough, traffic wasn’t bad, so we made it a full 30 minutes early and were able to treat ourselves to breakfast at the hospital’s food court. Corned beef hash and scrambled eggs reminded me: don’t end up in the hospital. 🙂 Just kidding. It was good hospital food, but it was still hospital food.

Intake was easy and my appointment started on time, but once I was in the machine for 5 minutes or so, they pulled me out and asked me if I was certain I didn’t have a metal plate in my head.

“Um, last time I checked, I didn’t. You may want to ask Adam, he’s good at remembering things I don’t,” I jested. They actually asked if I was being serious.

The machine needed a reboot, they said, so I waited while they did that, and we tried it again. *HONK HONK HONK HONK Beeeeeeeeeep WHOOOOOONK* No good. Now the back computer needed a reboot. And again, no good!

Ah well, machines break. They said they’d call me later in the day or on another day when the machine was fixed to come back, and that’s just what happened.

I got a call around 2 in the afternoon, and we made up for me to come in after Adam got off of work. When we came back at 6 p.m., the scan went off without a hitch. I’m actually looking forward to seeing the new pictures of my brainmeats!

Clean, Clean… *shake, shake* Clean, clean, clean, clean, clean! *boogies down*

Yesterday, I transformed into The White Tornado of AwesomenessTM and made my kitchen behave.

See, we have this tiny galley kitchen that opens up into our living room, so you can see the entire mess, and if you, like, make a bowl of cereal in it, it looks like something exploded in there… so you can imagine what the room looked like after we had cooked 2 or 3 actual delicious meals in that room.

I spent my Wednesday taming that beast. And doing laundry.

There’s really something about waking up, seeing a horrible mess, and being able to take it down by the time that Adam comes home from work that is empowering to me. I mean, I dislike cleaning as much as the next person, but it does give you a feeling of control over your immediate surroundings.

One thing that I dislike immensely about having MS and seizure disorder is the lack of control that I often feel that I have over my own body. It often dictates what I can and cannot do — so when I can get an entire kitchen clean (including all the dishes and everything in it), and I can do all the laundry in the house on a particular day, I feel accomplished. I feel like I have really done my part in my marriage and that all the responsibility doesn’t fall to my husband. Also, when I can consistently keep the place nice, I feel more like I am prepared or at least on my way to being prepared to become a mother.

Rockin out on my Thursday

As for what I’m up to on this beautiful Thursday, I aim to tidy and keep things nice around the house, to fold the laundry that I did yesterday, write a guest blog for a friend of mine, practice some guitar, and take Brisco for a walk. I’m also going to either go out and get some “Get Well Soon” cards or make some myself because I have a couple of very loved family members who are in the hospital — my grandfather and my uncle — one in TN and one in FL.

I think this “homemaker” gig is starting to get to me, because I want to make them both caramel ribbon brownies to send in the mail, even though I know that’s not wise. “Oh, you’re not feeling well? Here’s a box of unhealthy yumminess.” If life were “fair,” sugar would be a miracle cure for any illness.

Ah well, into every life a little rain must fall. Hope it’s not falling on you today!

Don’t forget, if you need a pick-me-up, that there’s nothing better than a Gratitude Rampage! I’ll be posting mine on Facebook later today, like always. ❤

Make it a great day, readers! I know you can!

Monday, Monday…

Well, it’s been 2 full days without Lamictal now, and I’m starting to actually feel more like myself. I recognized myself in the mirror and I actually smiled this morning. Smiled, like I like myself!

Well if that’s not a step in the right direction, I don’t know what is.

Saturday, we went to the adoption fair at Petco, just like I said we were going to. Unfortunately, we found out that the kittens we were going to foster were a lot older than we are used to, so we had to back out. Brisco can hang with kittens that are 3-8 weeks old when we get them because he treats them like babies… but 18 week old kittens have another name. They’re called cats. I mean, they’re just shy of 6 months old and are basically full grown. They’re done with their socialization period, and Brisco is more likely to chase them down than to lick them and show them the ropes of life. We don’t need that kind of crazy in this house.

So, Adam and I are looking for other rescue organizations in the area and other kittens to foster.

Today, so far has been pretty decent. Coffee, a trip to Walgreens to pick up meds and some cereal, a little Sims 3, and some Facebook.

I wish I were going to Memphis to visit my Poppy, who is not feeling so well. My parents are off to Memphis to visit him and help him get healthier. They say he’s lost 45 pounds this year. I’d like to lose that much! I’d also like to be in Memphis cooking for the old man. I’m certain he wouldn’t say no to some of my lasagna, mac & cheese, or meatloaf. He liked it a lot when I cooked for him while we lived together. And I was working out 2-3 hours a day back then and was not so worried about being super-healthy with my foods.

I’m realizing more and more that I don’t feel like I know what is “healthy” anymore. I think that lean meats, vegetables, fruits, no processed foods, minimal sugar, and minimal grains is good. I think eating rice is okay because I don’t feel bad afterward. I also think I’m okay eating some dairy because I my allergy test didn’t say I was casein or gluten intolerant. I also think that working out more has to happen. I don’t think that just walking is cutting it.

I miss the days when I used to be a “gym person.” You know the type – the ones who go to the gym for at least 2 hours a day… the ones who know what machines do what and who have a routine for each day that changes… I wonder if it’s even realistic to think about being that way again. I know I used to overheat myself regularly and have problems hearing and feeling the bottoms of my feet. It’s probably not smart to go in that direction now that overheating means “having seizures.” But I really miss weightlifting, and know that it’s the fastest way for me to shed weight. At least for now I have Wii Fit and yoga, and really, no valid excuses at all.

This whole “having no excuses” thing is kind of a ballbuster! It’s forcing me to admit to myself that I’m badly overweight and not in a rock band or making music because I’m lazy and/or preoccupied with other things. What’s worse is the realization that I have come to accept these things about myself, when they are things that upset me and that I have the power to change relatively quickly. All I need to do is start working out and recording my practice sessions.

I know blog posts are supposed to have a point usually. This one is more like a diary entry more than anything else. Just another day going by in the life of your everyday, not-so-average MS & seizure disorder girl — fighting the good fight, so you don’t have to. 😉

The Kittens Are Coming!

Good morning, my lovelies.

It’s not yet morning med time, and I’m already working on the paperwork to become a foster parent for Chicago Cat Rescue. I had a great talk with Cindy, their foster volunteer coordinator, yesterday, and it may be as early as Monday that this apartment has a kitten infestation! 🙂 (As in, they offered us 5 kittens and we can only take 3.)

Tomorrow, Adam and I are going to the Petco on Halsted & Barry sometime between noon and four to meet her and some of the other volunteers during one of their adoption fair events. (And to pick up some litter and other supplies we’ll need for the babies.)

It will probably be closer to noon that we hit the adoption fair, because there is MUCH awesomeness afoot tomorrow!

I am smiling ZOMGSOGREATBIG on the inside because I get to see my MANDA tomorrow! Oh, sweet Manda K., you make any bad stuff going on just go away. ❤

I’m not sure what time we’re all heading out to Indiana beach, but if the weather (and my health) holds out, we’re supposed to go to the beach with Manda and Jess, and then at some point head to Orland Park for dinner.

As I’m reading this, I am dumbstruck by the fact that I actually have real plans for a social life tomorrow. I, like, have things to do and people to see! It’s amazing.

The other thing that’s kind of amazing/funny to me is that a good friend from Denver, CO might be the first person to see our apartment in its furnished state, as opposed to family/friends who live in town. There’s something amusing about that to me. I’m not sure if it’s a -5 to Gryffandor for lack of a Housewarming party, or if it’s just a sign of really good timing on her part. Either way, I’m happy to have someone over.

For anyone who’s curious about food:
Last night’s healthier lasagna experiment went awesomely well. For anyone who wants to recapture the beauty that Adam and I created: We used 93/7 ground turkey instead of ground beef and seasoned the meat with onion powder, garlic powder, basil, thyme, & oregano; used Culinary Circle Three Forest Mushroom Blend Pasta Sauce (2 bottles) instead of marinara; used 6 cheese Italian blend instead of mozzarella, and went low-fat with the ricotta. It was super-delicious!!!

Today looks pretty relaxing and straight-forward for me. The never-ending cycle of laundry continues, as do the dishes. (Why should today be different?) I just want the house to sparkle when folks see it, so I’m a cleaning monster right now. There’s nothing terribly taxing to me about telling Pandora to play me music in the vein of Rick James and to keep the good funk coming while I make my home something to be proud of. 🙂

Today.

Hey there party people. How’s it going?

Life over on this end of the screen is anything but exciting. I made a nasty dent in that pile o’ laundry yesterday, so I have a good feeling about decimating the beast today.

Sims 3 Showtime keeps on crashing, which is making me a sad panda. I need a game I can play that doesn’t fail on me every few minutes.

If there’s one thing about being alone during the day that I have learned, it’s that I need distractions. And that’s a need – not a want. Playing with my sims always made me happy. But now the game keeps crashing all the time. It’s really irritating.

I suppose it’s for the best if it makes me concentrate on music more. I’ve been shoving it to the back burner since we moved. Truth be told, after thinking about the state of the music industry, I’m really wondering why I’m pushing myself to get back to it. Is it because it’s part of who I am that hasn’t been fully realized? Is it because I have expectations of myself? Or is it because I believe others have expectations of me? Eh. I think I’m being lazy now and am looking for a way out of the “put up or shut up” ultimatum I gave myself.

And really, that’s only because today, I am down. Annoyingly down, to be honest, and I know most of it is chemical. (Day 2 of 60 mg of Cymbalta!) The other part has to do with the fact that I’m taking a month-long Facebook break, and it’s day 1 of it. I’m already painfully aware of how much time I spend on it and I’m feeling lonely. Breaking an attention addiction is no fun.

To put it in a way that my friend Genie would definitely understand, I am deeply in need of kittens. I know I will spend a fair amount of time on Cute Overload today.

I’m also going to call a few animal rescue organizations and find out about getting back into kitten fostering because, well, I *love* fostering kittens, and there’s no reason at all that I shouldn’t be doing just that very thing right now.

As for food – I’m having a pretty good time re-amassing healthy low-calorie/low-fat/low glycemic index recipes from family and friends.

Here are two really great healthy recipe websites that were suggested to me by Sara Rose Liebert and Sarah Decker yesterday.

Nourished Kitchen &
Diabetic Living Online

I’ll post others as I find them and as others suggest them. 🙂

Hope you’re having a great day. And if you’re not — I hope you do whatever it takes to make it a great day. You have the power. ❤

Hello, Ladies and Gentlemen

Since we’ve moved in, we’ve had a big heap of linens sitting in our hallway, and I simply cannot abide by it any longer. Today, it’s history. I don’t care how many loads it takes: I’m in for the long haul.

I’m also putting together a physical recipe box of breakfasts, lunches, and dinners that are low-calorie, low-fat, and low on the glycemic index scale and delicious. So, I’m basically looking at recipes that I already know are good for type 2 diabetics. This isn’t gonna be too difficult for me, because I used to eat this way before I switched over to the Paleo Diet.

I have half a mind to create a Pinterest Compendium of these kinds of recipes too, but that will have to wait for another day. Right now, I’m just trying to re-wrap my head around my ability to eat *some* grains, *some* dairy, and *some* beans.

Tonight, I’m making beef stew for supper. The only difference between paleo beef stew and non-paleo beef stew is arrowroot vs. flour for thickening. I’m going to go ahead and continue to use arrowroot because we have it! I mean, why use white flour if you don’t need to?

I’m also excited to be able to start to follow and make recipes handed down by my good friend Katherine over at Rags to Dishes. While on the Paleo Diet, the best thing I could do was look on and go, “Wow, those recipes look great!” Now, I can actually try some of her culinary masterpieces!

As for how I’m feeling today: I’m great! I figured that going down 10 mg on Cymbalta and 25 mg on Lamictal would leave me feeling awful, but surprisingly enough, I’m in a great mood and I’m not hurting. I’m sort of waiting for the other shoe to drop, but in the meanwhile I’m enjoying feeling well!

One thing you learn when you have MS is to take your victories while you can get them and enjoy them as best as possible, so I am not going to spend the whole day in the house, sitting online. I already have a grocery list written out, and I am going to head up to the grocery store in a few minutes to pick up the fixins for supper (and my lunch!).

I hope that everyone who reads this is doing well and is having a wonderful day.

Oh! I’d also like to share one other website that my friend Carolyn shared with me today. It helped me with my meditation earlier, and is just beautiful. Y’all should check out Calm.com. You won’t be disappointed.